CMS is short for content management system. It offers a solution for creating a website quickly with little technical know-how. But to add CMS to an existing website, you’ll need technical know-how unless you simply copy and paste over your content and use a CMS template.
Generally, if you’re looking to do this and don’t have HTML or CSS knowledge, it’s better to hire an expert to complete this work for you. And in many cases, simply implementing a CMS won’t solve all your website challenges, including slow load speeds and a lack of search engine optimization strategy.
However, if you still want to proceed with implementing a CMS, here are some ways to do that.
How to Add CMS to an Existing Website
The better question is how to integrate your content into a CMS. While it is possible to add a CMS to manage your existing website just the way it is, you could lose functionality or limit your functionality over time.
Doing a true CMS website implementation will allow you to add features via plugins or extensions so that your website remains modern and serves you through integrations with outside tools, such as marketing automation or a customer relationship manager (CRM).
- You’ll need to start by downloading your CMS of choice. There are several great options for a free, open-source CMS. WordPress offers the greatest flexibility. And when well-maintained, it is secure and provides a strong foundation for websites. You can download WordPress here.
- Then, create a subdomain. For example: test.mywebsite.com. You’ll use this to begin integrating your existing content into the CMS.
- Select a theme or work with a professional website designer to create a fully optimized, high-performing template.
- Migrate your content to your WordPress subdomain site.
- Test and retest to make sure all functionality is there.
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Benefits of a Website CMS
Wondering if adding a CMS to your existing website is worth all the effort? Here’s a look at the benefits of a CMS.
- Doesn’t require technical knowledge for adding content: you can update your website with ease and won’t have to rely on your technical team to make minor changes.
- Simpler website collaboration: multiple people can make updates within the CMS at the same time without causing any technical issues or website failures.
- Choose user roles and permissions: you can select how much a user sees when they are logged in. And prevent users from editing certain aspects of the website to protect your assets. Removing users is also speedy in case you experience staff turnover.
- Added features and extensions: add functionality to your website with ease. Manage SEO strategy and run reports to see if you’re missing key aspects of your SEO, such as page titles or meta descriptions.
- Blogging functionality: many CMS options have outstanding blogging features. You can add categories and allow your website visitors to search or sort by a topic to ensure they can read all about what interests them.
Why You Need Custom Website Design When Using a CMS
Some people will also tell you that a benefit of using a CMS is that you get free templates. However, using those templates can decrease your website performance significantly. Many pre-built templates feature unnecessary code that slows your website down. And these standard templates won’t completely match your branding and company needs no matter how perfectly you match them to your brand guidelines.
Working with a professional website designer to build a truly custom template is a far better option. This will provide the greatest functionality, speed and SEO opportunities to build a high-ranking website that looks great and encourages repeat visitors.
New Light Digital offers custom website design, outstanding WordPress implementation and SEO to build a dynamic online presence that brings in visitors from search engines and converts them through clear calls to action. Schedule a free consultation now to learn more.